A History of the World's Most Liberal City

Book - 2013
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An endlessly entertaining portrait of the city of Amsterdam and the ideas that make it unique, by the author of the acclaimed Island at the Center of the World. Tourists know Amsterdam as a picturesque city of low-slung brick houses lining tidy canals; student travelers know it for its legal brothels and hash bars; art lovers know it for Rembrandt's glorious portraits. But the deeper history of Amsterdam, what makes it one of the most fascinating places on earth, is bound up in its unique geography-the constant battle of its citizens to keep the sea at bay and the democratic philosophy that this enduring struggle fostered. Amsterdam is the font of liberalism, in both its senses. Tolerance for free thinking and free love make it a place where, in the words of one of its mayors, "craziness is a value." But the city also fostered the deeper meaning of liberalism, one that profoundly influenced America: political and economic freedom. Amsterdam was home not only to religious dissidents and radical thinkers but to the world's first great global corporation.
Publisher: New York : Doubleday, ©2013.
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9780385534574
Characteristics: 357 pages, 24 unnumbered pages of plates :,illustrations (some color), color maps ;,25 cm.


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Jun 11, 2018

This book/Audio Book is great! I may be moving to Amsterdam in a few months and wanted to learn more about its history. I’ve been to the city many times but didn’t really know the history. This audio book literally made me laugh and cry. It was very interesting. You will learn about the ancient history all the way to recent history. I was very impressed. The only thing I didn’t like about the audio book is the CDs end in random places, even cutting off some words sometimes. But other than that I highly recommend. I will definitely seek out other books/audio books by this author. I use audio books because I am not very good at reading but I also like to follow along with the physical book too. If that’s also what you like to do than this will definitely be a good option for you.

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